Monday, May 28, 2007

Concert Watch! - The Killers and Louis XIV

Wow. Woooow. This latest concert with The Killers was an entirely different experience than my last two. For one thing, the average age of the audience seemed much older than before. It's not that the audience is three or four years older than when The Killers first came. It's that all the young folk have either moved on or decided to go to Sasquatch and all that's left are professional twentysomethings, thirtysomethings, fortysomethings, and even a few fiftysomethings. It was certainly a very surprising thing to behold! I would expect a lot of those folks at a...I don't know...Rod Stewart concert. But The Killers! They've skewed much older! I guess it's a reflection of their newfound popularity amongst the VH1 crowd. They appear to have left the MTV crowd behind.

So be it. This was a concert experience just as good, if not better, than any of my prior experiences. We got a standing space right in front of the sound technician area, which meant that we had a lovely, sturdy barricade to lean against. Actually, it was even nicer because there was a platform raised about 3 inches off the ground that we got to stand on. It was like wearing heels to a concert, except without all the pain! That was fairly glorious. The venue itself was a marvel. I didn't realize I had been to a concert here before - back in high school, when it was still the Seahawks Stadium Events Center, I went to the Dashboard Confessional concert in that very space. Now that it's become the WaMu Theater, it seems to have been upgraded from a vast, empty warehouse to a large, handsome venue, complete with large grandstands to accommodate all those older folks. It certainly has improved with all that WaMu sponsorship money.

As for the music? The original opening act, Hot Hot Heat, was replaced with Louis XIV after Brandon Flowers' "illness" pushed the concert back a week. The only Louis XIV song I knew was, well, "Louis XIV." This, however, did not prove to be a problem. All of their songs sounded exactly the same, with the only signal that they had moved on being the changing colors of lights shining upon their band logo. How very sad. But they were pleasant opening act standards. The older people obviously did not know and did not care who Louis XIV was. The band itself looked like they got their hair cut by castoffs from Shear Genius. All in all, a rather drab, slightly-above-mediocre time.

It got better. The Killers are, without doubt, an amazing band to see live. Brandon Flowers is unarguably an excellent performer. He is a showman without compare among his contemporaries. He dresses like he cares (often in Dior Homme, sans doute). Nobody does that anymore. He doesn't look dirty. He's somewhere in the same vein as Muse and The Hives, both amazingly stylish bands, but neither of them has his slyly flamboyant, vulnerable yet somehow masculine charm. He just does what he does so damn well. He can sing. He can hold the stage. He can do it all. Even as early lighting problems threatened to dampen his shine, he still managed to command the audience as well as he ever had in the past. The audience seemed to respond better when they reverted back to their old CD, but the energy was there nonetheless. I waited for "Under the Gun," my favorite of their songs, but it never came. I didn't mind too much. He sang his heart out, which was all the more impressive when I realized that he sounded rather hoarse when simply speaking to the audience. I forgive him for last week. He's just too damn great to watch.

1 comment:

David said...

"Under the Gun"! One of there best songs. But I can't believe you like their new CD. It's so... mediocre. Bland. Blah. Haha, oh well. I always knew you lacked taste.